Aloe Vera – Green Fighting Machine July 25, 2012 No Comments
Ever had a burn, bite or sting and used nature’s beloved Aloe Vera plant to soothe the pain?
Yes? Well we all know about the legendary healing powers of Aloe Vera. It was used as far back as 1000 years ago to treat various skin diseases.
Some people may even know how good Aloe Vera is for your hair, but did you know how beneficial Aloe Vera to your health when you drink it?
Drinking Aloe Vera benefits everyone from infants to the elderly. It has a very strong taste, which isn’t always favoured with our English taste buds, so many people mix the Aloe Vera juice with a smoothie – the Mexicans have been doing it for years!
There are well over 200 different types of Aloe Vera plants in the world. The Greeks were the first to research this plant in depth – they commonly used Aloe Vera as treatment for boils and to stop bleeding from a wound.
Let me shed a little light on what other prodigious properties this plant has to offer:
- Boost to your Immune System – Have a few capfuls to improve your body’s defence system – very useful if you suffer from anything from Polysaccharides to a chesty cough!
- Digestion – A perfect way to naturally cleanse your digestive system – In Pakistan Aloe Vera is mixed with seeds and used as a digestion aid after meals, and they aren’t the only ones benefiting from this powerful plants aiding quality’s, it’s actually been proven to be a fantastic cure for IBS and other digestive disorders.
- Run along! - Aloe Vera is an inflammatory, and great to use if you suffer from weak joints or Arthritis – many Athletes still drink Aloe Vera juice today, even with all our modern technologies available!
- Detoxing – 2012 is the year of the detox and looking after ourselves – we are more aware than ever what is bad for the body and mind, but not always sure what are the best foods to be eating instead?
Aloe Vera is a good place to start, filled with all sorts of minerals, vitamins and trace elements with also an added bonus of having a soothing calming effect that boosts your energy levels!
- Asthma – Yes – even Asthma sufferers can benefit from drinking Aloe Vera.
Proven research has shown that asthmatics were able to cut down using their inhalers, including steroid inhalers once they started drinking the juice on a regular basis!
So the only question I’m sure your all asking yourselves now is – Where Can I buy Aloe Vera?
It’s widely available throughout the UK in pharmacies and supplement retailers. We recommend blending the aloe vera powder with a fresh smoothie so it tastes great.
Why not try aloe vera powder with our tasty Blueberry Thrill for the ultimate boost!
Raspberry, Blueberry & Banana – with added aloe vera.
Easy Recipes March 12, 2012 No Comments
Looking for recipes? Check out this fantastic website with lots of easy recipes. We’re loving the gluten free section.
Do you get 5 a day? February 16, 2012 No Comments
Turn over a new leaf in 2012 January 1, 2012 No Comments
Everyone knows that eating greens is good for you. Whenever Popeye the Sailor Man faces losing Olive Oyl or Swee’Pea he downs a can of spinach to give him the energy to save the day, and the Jolly Green Giant seems to walk over hills for hours singing in that lovely leafy dress powered by frozen peas and green beans. But chowing down on greens hasn’t always had so much support, even this week The First Lady had to step in with her ‘Let’s Move’ campaign to convince Jay Leno to eat his greens after his claim on The Tonight Show that he hadn’t eaten a vegetable since 1969.
Whether you are in Jay Leno’s camp or love nothing better than to sit down to a plate of mixed vegetables, a trend has emerged that has seriously jazzed up greens consumption – the GREEN SMOOTHIE!
Smoothie drinkers the world over will know that this year darling, if you’re drinking a smoothie; it simply HAS to be green. Green smoothies are all the rage and there are some fantastic recipes out there.
Why are they so good?
Leafy greens are packed with antioxidants, vitamins (A, C, B2, B6 and K notably), magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium and potassium. They are inexpensive and readily available. By blending vegetables like spinach and avocado up the foods are broken down to a cellular level so the nutrients can be absorbed even more efficiently than when you’re chewing them.
What do I need to watch out for?
Foods like spinach are very high in fibre. There are two types of fibre; insoluble fibre (found in things like nuts, seeds, grains and the skin of some fruit and veg) and soluble fibre (found in things like oats, legumes, apples, bananas, berries etc). As the name would suggest, insoluble fibre doesn’t dissolve which is why if you make a smoothie with spinach and water it will just separate, the spinach will rise to the top, go brown and oxidise. So, when making a green smoothie always blend your vegetables containing insoluble fibre with fruits/pulses containing soluble fibres. That way you get a delicious creamy smoothie that doesn’t separate.
Green Smoothie Recipe
This feisty smoothie kicks ass with its blend of spinach, kiwi, low-fat yoghurt and apple juice. The bitterness of the spinach is mellowed by the creamy probiotic yoghurt and sweet apple juice, and the tangy kiwi gives it the kick that brings it all together.
Have a go at home and email in your green smoothie recipes to email@example.com Happy Blending!
Sun and Smoothies April 8, 2011 No Comments
There is nothing quite like those first few days of glorious weather each year in the UK. When Winter finally gives way to green shoots and sunshine. I’ve just come back from a smoothie event and in 24 hours people have gone from being cold and wet, to bringing out the shades and exposing a bit of white flesh. London is transformed! Everyone seems to slow down a bit and start to enjoy their journeys rather than just focusing on the destination.
At Love Smoothies it’s definitely our favourite time of year and also our busiest. We love nothing better than a deliciously cold, refreshing smoothie on a hot summers day. Now don’t get me wrong smoothies are good all year round, but during the summer there just that much better. So with the weather forecast predicting a ‘warm front’ (to use the technical term), it’s time to get ready for the start of summer! It’s going to be nice from here to the weekend and beyond, so it might even be time for the first BBQ of the year. A bit early perhaps but that’s the thing about the British summer, you never quite know how long it’ll be here for so when it comes it’s always best to ‘make hay whilst the sunshines’ if you’ll excuse the (relevant) pun.
I’m thinking of doing some further Smock-tail (smoothie/cocktail for the uninitiated) development this weekend. Smoothie cocktails are definitely the way forward, they’re summery and because you are blending one of our fresh-frozen smoothie pouches (which contain only real fruit) with alcohol it re-hydrates the brain, which balances out the dehydration from the alcohol.
Actually it’s worth knowing that fruit mirrors the human body i.e. both are made up of 80% water. So it’s logical to consume food that contains as much water as the body itself and fruit is the only food stuff on the planet that does this.
Anyway, I’ve gone off on a tangent – obviously trying too hard to get a relevant fact in there! My point, if I had one, was that if you need a home delivery or you own a café and you’re spring cleaning your menu offering - now is the time to call us. We’ll get you a delivery of smoothies and you’ll be set for Summer. The British weather can be fickle, so make the most of it whilst it’s here!
Happy smoothie/smocktail making. Let us know how you get on!
Foolproof Summer Berry Fool Recipe April 1, 2011 No Comments
I pity the fool who wastes time making complicated desserts. You can include a quick game of Twister in to your dinner party with the below sneaky recipe – it only takes 10 minutes!
- 500g (4 pots) Raspberry Yoghurt
- 2 140g pouches of ‘Berry Go Round’ (Blackberry, Strawberry, Raspberry)
- 30g pre-made meringues crushed (sorry Delia)
- 40g golden caster sugar
- 65g fresh raspberries
- Sprig of mint
1. Gently heat the frozen berries and caster sugar to make a compote and pour into a bowl. Pop on the side to cool.
2. When cool divide into 4 pretty tumbler glasses and top with a pot of yoghurt (one per glass).
3. Cover the yoghurt with crushed meringue and a couple of fresh raspberries.
4. Garnish with a sprig of mint
Happy April Fool’s Day Everyone!
For more fantastic recipes check out ‘Cook Eat Delicious Food Blog’
Here comes the sun, time for festivals. March 14, 2011 No Comments
As sun broke through the clouds earlier in the week and spring was thinking about being sprung, our attention started to turn to thoughts of summer and all the outdoor festival fun awaiting us in 2011.
Major festival line ups are being announced daily helping to increase the anticipation of a possible end to the nuclear winter, so we thought we’d give our brief but informative guide to UK festival goings on in 2011.
The Isle of Wight traditionally kicks off the season proper, and on the 10th June they plug in the amps, crank the volume to 11 and deliver some really good acts….line up includes The Kings of Leon, We are Scientists, Foo Fighters, Pulp and Two Door Cinema Club. Time to invest in a boat….or at least a ferry ticket.
The festival to beat all festivals of course is Glastonbury with the big acts playing from 24th June onwards, and headlining the hallowed pyramid stage this year are none other than U2, Coldplay and Beyonce…..I guess a lot of people who missed out on tickets will be feeling a little bit better about it. Yes that includes me.
One of the last true independent festivals that continues to build in stature with rave reviews from all who have experienced it is Secret Garden Party, held July 21st – 24th and with Leftfield and Blondie now confirmed all looks good for another great party.
If you prefer your festivals a little rockier then Reading usually hits the spot, the headliners are not yet announced but rumours include The Strokes and My Chemical Romance, and organisers have promised they will be not be playing elsewhere this summer…intriguing….but what about at Leeds?
So you’ve found your perfect line up, arrived at the festival and the sun is shining, bliss! Except the only thing on offer to quench your thirst is a sugary fizzy drink, alcohol (not yet it’s 10am….) or very, very expensive water. What you need is something that hydrates and packs in the vitamins at the same time. How about a pure fruit smoothie? Perfect festival fodder and ours contain 2.5 of your 5 a day, and trust me you need it, this 2.5 could help keep you alive past the weekend. Festival and smoothie go hand in hand like Bruce Springsteen and encores, like Slash and solos, like queues and toilets.
Looking for a smoothie supplier for your festival catering business, look no further we would love to work with you. Want to add a different twist? Hire a festival smoothie bike from us so your customers can blend their own smoothie the green way man.
Enjoy the summer!
Disclaimer: Smoothies should be enjoyed responsibly, always use a lid.
Healthy Milkshakes – is there such a thing? March 4, 2011 No Comments
During the Winter here at Love Smoothies we like spend our time in the development kitchen, playing around with new recipes and trying out new flavours. One particular area that we were interested in at the end of last year was the concept of milkshakes made with real fruit. We’ve always thought a more healthy milkshake was something that needed to be invented. Also milkshakes aren’t subjected to VAT (Very Annoying Tax) which went up to 20% in Jan 2011 so it means they are generally cheaper for the retailer and the customer too – which is all important when people have less money to spend.
So we set about to create the best tasting milkshakes we could that were more healthy for you then all the others. We started by trying the milkshakes out there at the moment and found out that whilst some of them tasted OK, all had a high number of calories. In particular the McDonald’s banana milkshake has 14g of fat of which 10g are saturated fats – which is absolutely astonishing. One McDonald’s milkshake contains 545 calories which is over 25% of your RDA – just in one drink!! But that’s nothing in comparison to a milkshake that has topped a list of the 20 worst drinks in America recently – it’s equivalent to eating 68 strips of bacon or 30 chocolate chip cookies!! Check it out: http://reut.rs/fg1Gan
So we saw instantly what we were up against. Sugar loaded drinks that tasted artificial and didn’t contain anything even approaching real fruit. This made the job easy for us because surely all we had to do was use our expertise in creating smoothies and apply it to milkshakes, non?
If only life were that simple. We got off to a flying start using various combinations of fruit and milk which tasted OK – but it definitely needed something more. So we tried various combinations of fruit using blenders and specialised milkshake making machines, but to no avail. The reason milkshakes generally taste so sweet is because they contain so many artificial sweeteners, colours and preservatives. We wanted to stick to our philosophy of only producing healthy drinks, but needed something in the mix to give it that milkshake taste and consistency.
Eventually after many trials and tribulations we found an ingredient that was derived from natural products, which was low in sugar, 99% fat free and had no artificial flavours, colours or sweeteners, was suitable for vegetarians and was gluten free! By adding this to the milk and the real fruit we created Love Shakes – our new range of healthier milkshakes.
There are 3 to choose from:
When we were sampling milkshakes at the very start of the process we found that most of the milkshake got thrown away before it was finished. The taste was so artificial and cloying and the portion size so large that people were only drinking half and leaving the rest. Now that’s not good for anyone, and particularly not the environment. A BBC study in 2008 found that £10.2bn of avoidable food waste was disposed of in England and Wales each year. We didn’t want to be a part of this, so we packed our shakes with fruit. So much so that each one of our Love Shakes contains 1-of-your 5-a-day – which is unheard of for a milkshake and they taste amazing.
So if you’re looking to stock some fantastic milkshakes at your business call us and we’ll see if we can get some samples to you.
Or if you want to try our Love Shakes at home then order online here.
Thank you and roll on the Summer! The perfect time to drink a shake.
The Fresh Vs. Frozen Debate February 25, 2011 1 Comment
If you can cast your mind back as far as January 4th of this year, you’ll remember it as the day the cost of living in the UK got that little bit dearer. The increase in VAT (thanks George) to 20% forced us all to think a lot more carefully about our personal budgets.
The BBC website warned us that: UK households, on average, will be about £400 a year worse off, Budget documents suggest, with the poorest 10% losing £200 and the richest £1,800, although the poorest will be hit harder than most as a percentage of their income.
So let me get this straight, the government keep telling us to eat more healthily, but just made the cost of doing so more expensive?
Well before you pop too many cheap convenience foods in your shopping basket have a look through the below sneaky tricks to help you make you maintain your current shopping list and save money through the art of freezing.
What are the benefits of frozen food?
The fantastic Love Food, Hate Waste website reminds us that we throw away 8.3 million tonnes of food every year that could have been eaten. Some of it isn’t even out of date. I’d estimate I throw away about a tonne of broccoli a year (sorry broccoli, it’s nothing personal) and the reason is that I buy it thinking I’ll use it for a few nights in a row and then I either forget it, don’t fancy it or I end up eating out instead.
Food is expensive enough as it is without us throwing it away and having to replace it. WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Plan) published a scary fact recently – UK households on average throw away £420 of food every year that could have been eaten (which is £20 more than the average house will be worse off according to the BBC).
At Love Smoothies we began our business using fresh fruit to make our delicious smoothies but found that the amount of wastage meant it just wasn’t cost or energy efficient. We were also limited in the range and quality of fruits we could buy out of season. So, we moved to the supply of frozen fruit in menu specifc smoothie pouches to avoid these pitfalls, allowing us to offer a complex range of smoothie recipes.
Buying frozen food will help you manage your groceries to reduce wastage. Fact.
My eyes are about 5 times bigger than my stomach and unfortunately left to my own devices I’d be eating family sized portions at every meal.
The NHS have a great page on their site that helps you work out how big protions of fruit/veg should be. Check out the NHS Website Because let’s face it pouring frozen peas is a tricky game.
If you still end up with leftovers then NO PROBLEM, just freeze them down and you’ve got a meal waiting for you in the freezer.
Planning meals in advance is the best way to avoid over-spending. If you cook in bulk then freeze down in portion controlled bags (similar to a Love Smoothies pouch!) then you avoid all opportunities to waste food.
Frozen foods often have a shelf life of around 24 months if correctly frozen so if you see something on offer in the supermarket and you have a dinner party coming up in a few months time – bag that bargain and freeze it down!
- Most frozen foods are ‘quick frozen’ which means cell damage in the freezing process is minimised to avoid natural degradation. So, all the taste, colour, texture and nutritional value is locked in.
- Bacteria can’t multiply on frozen food.
- You don’t need to use preservatives when you freeze so it’s just your food, how you want it and when you want it.
Look for deals on bulk frozen fruit/veg – these are generally cheaper than their fresh counterparts and last a hell of a lot longer. Buying frozen fruit/veg will also mean you can buy seasonal or tropical fruits all year round. Or if you have a good local market near you buy your fruit there and freeze it down. You’ll be supporting your local business, getting your 5-a-day and avoiding wastage.
It’s also worth noting that raw ingredients like fruit and veg are zero-vat rated. So you don’t have to pay VAT on a Love Smoothies pouch as you would a pre-made bottled smoothie.
No wastage, no chopping, no peeling. Seasonal fruits all year round reasonably priced. Sounds amazing, right?
Well, like everything, frozen food comes with its own problems. If you’ve ever tried to thaw out frozen herbs you’ll find that they just turn to mush in seconds. Sadly, not everything thaws well so defrosting and cooking/blending frozen ingredients is best.
Critics would say that there is no justification for the lets-be-honest shameful carbon cost of the freezing process and of frozen storage, but we would argue that frozen food’s justification is that it is a very real reaction to a topical problem.
Humans and animals have been freezing food for thousands of years but unfortunately along the way we’ve swapped caves and ice cellars for chest freezers thanks to a certain Clarence Birdseye who made the whole thing a bit less messy and more efficient through his process of quick freezing.
At Love Smoothies we know that what we do has a footprint and we try to adopt a green approach in response to this. We NEED to freeze our product so we can offer complex flavours of seasonal fruits all year round at a competitive price. So, in recompense for this carbon cost where possible all our packaging is bio-degradable, our fruits locally sourced and our POS material recycled. We’re not claiming to be carbon neutral yet, but that’s our aim.
Critics of frozen food ignore the fact that every year 18 million tonnes of food waste ends up in landfills which are awful for the environment and costly to maintain. Check out the worrying stats on the Food Aware CIC website.
And due to the longer shelf life of frozen food, it requires fewer and less-frequent deliveries internationally and to supermarkets and homes.
We’d love some help on improving our Green Approach to frozen fruit smoothies – any assistance will be gratefully received